Visiting a rainforest in the wet season – what were we thinking?

Coastal northern Queensland is a tropical rainforest. Essentially there are two seasons: hot and still hot but also wet. Our visit was during the second. When I first figured this out before we left Ottawa, I was bummed. How can we sit on a beach and swim in the Coral Sea if it’s raining all the time?

How misinformed I was. It doesn’t rain all the time. It rains in torrential downpours once or twice a day. It can soak you in an instant but it falls straight down so you don’t have shut windows or even go indoors. One day during a downpour, I stayed sitting under the poolside parasol with my laptop, perfectly dry. When it’s not raining, it can be heavily overcast or cloudlessly sunny or anything in between. The changing sky creates views that often made us pull out our cameras.

Rain is not the reason we didn’t go to the beach or swim in the sea. Northern Queensland has much, much stronger reasons than plain old rain to keep you off the beach during the month of March. You don’t go because it’s stinger and saltwater crocodile season. Stingers are venomous jellyfish. They don’t attack you, they casually caress you with their long poisonous tentacles as they innocently float by you in the water. Saltwater crocodiles attack with intent, they mean to get you – either for breakfast or a late supper.

 

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